Reviews Archives - Page 10 of 84 - The Millions

March 30, 2016

The Solution Is a Gay Socialist Utopia Built for Two 2


Created on a website, crowd-sourced in serial, Beijing Comrades is the people’s public fantasy of intimacy. The result is a classic of queer consciousness-raising erotica.

March 23, 2016

Men in Tights Crammed into Confined Spaces 1


Bachelder’s portrait of middle-class, middle-aged males revolves around football. Full disclosure: In my version of hell, scowling football coaches pace up and down the River Styx, their steady barking of martial commands only interrupted to consult their laminated sheets on which every possible variation on the off-tackle running play is written.

March 21, 2016

Lighter, Smaller, Thinner: On Lost Girls and Lost Mothers 6


To what should girls aspire when an entire culture, including a culture of smart literary women, values them for how little of them there is?

March 16, 2016

A Hint of the Demonic: Photography as a Dark Art 0


Félix Nadar personifies photography as an avenging angel who, through the accursed image, makes her terrible will known.

March 15, 2016

The Human Deep Within the Machine 0


The coming together of the novel’s two plots is the least compelling aspect of Innocents and Others. Its nod to narrative unity is forced, but the best part about the nod is how convincingly it suggests that we were all better off talking to each other in the dark.

March 9, 2016

The Great Divide Between Science and Literature Is False 2


Diagnosed with a serious illness of his own, Kalanithi found that he needed literary translation of his experiences. When scientific studies and survival statistics offered little, he turned to books: Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Leo Tolstoy, Virginia Woolf. He read memoirs by cancer patients. “It was literature,” he writes, “that brought me back to life during this time.”

March 3, 2016

The Life of Meaning: On Yann Martel’s ‘The High Mountains of Portugal’ 4


What matters is not whether one believes in a higher power, but rather making use of whatever philosophical tools give life meaning and create vectors by which to effect change in the world.

March 2, 2016

Confining Roberto Bolaño’s ‘2666’ to the Stage 12


On the stage, Pelletier and Espinoza can’t help but defend the Western values the driver has insulted. As Pelletier lands blows, he cries out, in dialog augmented by the playwrights, “This is for the feminists of Paris!…This one’s for Salman Rushdie!”

February 24, 2016

Taste Is the Only Morality: On Han Kang’s ‘The Vegetarian’ 0


The Vegetarian is dark, cynical, even antinatalist.

February 24, 2016

Against the Anti-Art Literati: On Roberto Calasso’s ‘The Art of the Publisher’ 6


For the most part, publishing today, whether print or digital, lacks the overarching sensibility that only the good publisher provides.